Monday, August 27, 2012

Let Go To Make Room

Toss these things:
  • Old ideas
  • Distractions
  • Difficult people
  • Guilt
  • Perfection
  • Negative energy
  • Clutter
  • Others' expectations

to make room for these:
  • New possibilities
  • Simplicity
  • Calm focus
  • Increased creativity
  • Happiness
  • Renewed passion
  • Serenity
  • Positive momentum
  • Personal satisfaction

Let go of something now to make space for new and amazing possibilities.

“We must learn to let go as easily as we grasp
or we will find our hands full and our minds empty.” ~ Leo Buscaglia

Monday, August 20, 2012

Antique Tiger Oak Furniture

I have always loved furniture pieces made from quartersawn oak. It has character and texture. Sometimes called tiger oak because of the golden striped grain lines, it was popular during the Arts & Crafts period. My great grandmother Mamie had an oak table and chairs, china cabinet, and buffet. They are the simple Mission style, manufactured by the Cochran Chair Company in Cochran, Indiana before 1900. The story is that she had to burn two chairs and the table leaf one winter night so they wouldn't freeze. I don't know about that, but I have enjoyed the round table and four chairs in my kitchen and dining room for nearly 30 years.  

I have been wanting a tiger oak sideboard to match my table. Last Friday, on our anniversary, we went exploring in a local antique mall. We saw several oak buffets, but they weren't exactly what I had in mind. We did come across a cute little tiger oak bookcase with a single glass door and the same simple lines. It fits perfectly on a short wall in our dining room, and the sale price was right at $225. I've already filled it with pieces of my pottery collection.

We noticed it had an original looking shipping label on the back, hand addressed to Portland Planing Mill in Portland, Tennessee (where we live). What looks like an original price of $37 can be seen on the wood back. The manufacturer on the label is Grand Rapids Fancy Furniture Company in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I was able to find that they were in business from 1896 to 1938, before being bought out by another company. They made office desks, ladies desks, bookcases, music and radio cabinets, mostly in the Arts & Crafts style.  The only info I found about the Portland Planing Mill is a Portland Herald article in 1909. 

I'll keep searching for a tiger oak sideboard or buffet, enjoying my quest since it's such fun browsing around antique shops, flea markets and estate sales. I wonder about the families who owned the pieces, where they came from and the stories they could tell.  

Antiques are things one generation buys,
the next generation gets rid of,
and the following generation buys again.”
--Author Unknown

Monday, August 13, 2012

Rockin' On The Porch

Remember the old rocking chair I bought back in April? Well, I finally got around to recovering my yard sale bargain with a remnant of denim fabric. It now coordinates beautifully with the other furniture on our screened porch. It only took a few tools and a Saturday afternoon for the whole project.  

Naturally, once I put the newly covered rocker outside, I had to rearrange the furniture on the porch. And do a little sweeping and cleaning, water the plants and dust off the tables. But it was a nice way to spend a pleasantly cool Saturday in August. I was energized, so I got a lot accomplished both inside and outside the house. 

I had a pretty place to sit with my morning coffee to write this blog post. Now I'm rockin' on the porch watching the hummingbirds crowd around our feeders.

Here's a link to a photo of the chair before it was covered.   

There's something magical about porch swings and rocking chairs.  
Time slows to a crawl, the mind wanders, and a quiet peacefulness arrives.” 
– Author Unknown

Monday, August 6, 2012

Eat. Sleep. Stitch.

That's what I've been doing lately, happily stitching and designing new projects. It's been either too hot or too rainy for yard work. What fun to escape to my craft room for a few hours every day! After home chores are done, it's time to relax with my sewing machine, rotary cutter, and design board.

My latest creation, Lemon Pepper Squares, is a versatile size that can be used as a wall hanging, table topper, child-size or lap quilt. Finished dimensions will be 36" x 48". 

I'm working on the backing now, a simple All Black And White design with 4” squares left over from the front.  


Sewing is a lot like therapy. It eases the mind, helps sharpen your focus, and gives you a sense of accomplishment.” – Anonymous


1930's accountability Accuquilt adapt addiction adjust adventure advice affirmations amazing antiques attitude autumn baby quilt balance be yourself beach beauty birthday blessing bliss BlockBase Blue Wren breathe brightness camping card trick cat challenge change chevrons chips & salsa chocolate choice Christmas closet clothes clutter coffee color contentment cooking crafts crazy creativity crochet decorating design designs distraction DIY downsizing drama dreams energy EQ8 exasperating people excitement expectations fabric fall family feed sack festivals flexibility flour sack flowers flying geese Flynn Quilt Frame focus fool free spirit freedom fun furniture garden Granny Hill Granny Rose grateful gratitude Halloween happiness hexagon imagination independence insight inspiration intuition inventory Janome joy just for today karma laughter lemon pepper lessons letting go life lists little things loose ends love magic Memorial Day memories Mother's Day motivation NASCAR nature opportunity organizing paradise passion patience peace perception perspective positive energy productivity quilt quilting quotes reflection refresh relaxation remnant renew resilience resolutions responsibility retro routines satisfaction scraps sewing sewing machine simplicity simplify snow solitude Southern traditions spring st. patrick's day stitching strawberries stress sugar sack summer sunshine thankful Thanksgiving Thoughts tropical prints useful valentine vintage waiting weather winter wisdom wishes yard sales